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Truck Accidents Archives

Bill Proposed to Fund Highways, Improve Trucking Safety

The trucking industry must comply with a multitude of complex rules and regulations to ensure safety on our nation's roads. Recently, the Obama administration announced a proposal that would refine existing safety programs, as well as introduce new initiatives.

Will Fatal Bus-Truck Accident Spur New Safety Regulations?

If you've been following national news, you may have seen ongoing reports of a fatal bus-truck collision in California. A tractor-trailer collided with a motorcoach that was carrying about 40 high school students, and a bus window had to be kicked out for many of the students to escape. Flames engulfed the truck and the bus, and 10 people lost their lives. The tragedy underscores the need for updated safety standards for large buses.

Electronic Logs Proposed for Truck Drivers' Hours of Service

Keeping hours-of-service records is a primary safety requirement for truck drivers and trucking companies. Truck drivers are required to log their hours and take rest breaks to avoid fatigue, which too often is a contributing factor in serious truck accidents.

Serious Violations Preceded Deadly Truck Accident

A Chicago-area trucker is facing four felony charges for behavior leading up to a deadly wreck on I-88. The semi-truck accident occurred two weeks ago and claimed the life of a toll-way worker. It also left an Illinois State Trooper with critical injuries. As a result of his actions, the truck driver has been labeled an "imminent hazard to public safety" by the U.S. Department of Transportation. He has been ordered to stop operating commercial vehicles in interstate commerce by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Substance Abuse And Trucking Accidents

Alcohol and drugs are frequent contributing factors to a wide variety of motor vehicle accidents. Substance abuse is a concern of the trucking industry where a single truck accident can claim multiple lives and cause tremendous damage. A review of several studies conducted concerning substance abuse and truck drivers has revealed a concerning pattern. Younger, less experienced drivers who are being paid less than older drivers are more likely to abuse drugs or alcohol on the job. An impaired truck driver is an enormous threat to pedestrians and others on the road.

Truck Driver Cited After Metra Train Collision

On Monday, a Metra train collided with a semi truck in Bartlett. The truck driver involved in the crash is now being charged by Metra police for two violations. The 41-year-old man is being cited for violating a highway-rail grade crossing and avoiding a traffic control device, according to a spokesperson for Metra. The crash caused substantial damage to the semi-trailer and the automobiles it was hauling. Fortunately, there were no fatalities associated with the wreck. The truck driver, who works for a Pennsylvania trucking company, has been issued a November 18 court date in Cook County Circuit Court.

Truck Drivers And State Marijuana Laws

Individual states have taken steps to legalize medical and even recreational use of marijuana in recent years. While the states have the right to make these decisions, commercial drivers, pilots and operators are still bound by federal regulations concerning safe operation of buses, trains, planes and trucks. Truck drivers are still in violation of these rules if they have any marijuana in their systems while operating their vehicles. This is an important consideration for the victims of truck accidents as state laws establishing safe limits for THC in the blood could be used to deny liability. Regardless of the state where the accident occurs, if the driver has THC levels higher than zero, he or she is in violation of Department of Transportation guidelines for commercial drivers.

Drowsy Driving And Caffeine Intake Among Truck Drivers

Long, uninterrupted stretches of driving can challenge a person physically and mentally. Boredom and exhaustion set in and can increase the likelihood of a serious accident. These stretches are the working reality for many commercial truck drivers. Rules limiting the hours of service in which a truck driver can work do not ensure that the driver is well-rested or alert during a shift. A new study conducted on Long-haul truck drivers in Australia reveals that drivers who drink caffeinated beverages are less likely to have an accident than drivers who have not ingested caffeine.

New Safety Recommendations Released

The National Transportation Safety Board has made 19 total recommendations across several Transportation Department agencies. Some of the suggested changes stem from the NTSB investigation of a deadly 2011 crash in which a semi-truck hit an Amtrak train. That wreck claimed the lives of 6 people and left many more injured.

Health Exam Policy For Truck Drivers Changing

A longstanding Department of Transportation policy requires people with a commercial driver's license to get a medical physical every other year to maintain that license. The goal of the policy is to prevent, or at least minimize bus and truck crashes that result from a medical emergency of the driver. Questions about the effectiveness of that policy have led to new federal regulations set to take effect next year. The new policy will restrict which medical providers can sign off on a DOT physical by requiring them to go through a certification process. The certification will ensure that the provider understands the medical requirements set by the DOT and will know what needs to be done to test the driver's health condition.

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